Background: Previous studies employed demanding and complex hand tasks to study the brain activation in people with Parkinson s Disease (PD). There is inconsistent finding about the cerebellar activity during movement execution of this patient population. Objectives: This study aimed to examine the brain activation patterns of PD individuals in the on-state and healthy control subjects in a simple finger tapping task. Methods: Twenty-seven patients with PD and 22 age-matched healthy subjects were recruited for the study. Subjects were instructed to perform simple finger tapping tasks under self- and cue-initiated conditions in separate runs while their brain activations were captured using fMRI. Results: Healthy subjects had higher brain activity in contralateral precentral gyrus during the self-initiated task, and higher brain activity in the ipsilateral middle occipital gyrus during the cue-initiated task. PD patients had higher brain activity in the cerebellum Crus I (bilateral) and lobules VI (ipsilateral) during the self-initiated task and higher brain activity in the contralateral middle frontal gyrus during the cue-initiated task. When compared with healthy controls, PD patients had lower brain activity in the contralateral inferior parietal lobule during the self-initiated task, and lower brain activity in the ipsilateral cerebellum lobule VIII, lobule VIIB and vermis VIII, and thalamus during the cue-initiated task. Conjunction analysis indicated that both groups had activation in bilateral cerebellum and SMA and ipsilateral precentral gyrus and postcentral gyrus during both self- and cue-initiated movement. Individuals with PD exhibited higher brain activity in the executive zone (cerebellum Crus I and II) during self-initiated movement, and lower brain activity in the sensorimotor zone (i.e. lobule VIIb and VIII of the cerebellum) during cue-initiated movement. Discussions: The findings suggest that individuals with PD may use more executive control when performing simple movements.
- movement disorders
- Parkinson s disease
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience